The Real Bread Campaign has designated this month as Sourdough September. I have experimented a few times with sourdough bread but never for very long so I thought this would be a good incentive to have a proper go!
I therefore intend to try and do (and blog!) something sourdough related every day this month, starting with cultivating my own sourdough starter.
I’ll explain it in more detail in another post but essentially a sourdough starter is a way of making use of the yeasts that are naturally present in wheat. The starter is then used in place of fresh/dried yeast in the bread dough.
There are many different techniques for making a sourdough starter, some involving a vast array of ingredients, but essentially all you really need is flour and water.
A pot to make it in – i use a large round plastic put with a push-on lid. when you are deciding what to make the starter in it’s worth remembering that this will grow and breathe so a glass jar with a secure lid has the potential to explode if you’re not careful!
A small scoop – mine is 1/3 cup or about 85ml. The aim is to add equal small amounts of flour & water each day for the first week so you want something that you can easily use that won’t end up swamping the jar after 4 days!
A spoon or whisk – you will need something to use to mix the flour and water with each day, it doesn’t really matter what it is (although I’d perhaps draw the line at using a garden spade…)
Flour – it’s up to you what floor you use although it’s best if it’s not just from some generic ‘mill’. I get mine from Shipton Mill. You can use white or wholemeal (rye flour apparently makes a good sourdough base as well), i prefer working with white flour personally.
Water – you can use bottled water but really…
1) Mix a level scoop of flour with a scoop of water
2) leave somewhere (anywhere except the fridge or the oven really!)
3) get on with the rest of your day!